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Poetics: Bk. 1 (Hackett Classics) [Paperback]

Aristotle , Richard Janko
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 10.95 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 Dec 1987 Hackett Classics
Richard Janko's acclaimed translation of Aristotle's Poetics is accompanied by the most comprehensive commentary available in English that does not presume knowledge of the original Greek. Two other unique features are Janko's translations with notes of both the Tractatus Coislinianus , which is argued to be a summary of the lost second book of the Poetics, and fragments of Aristotle's dialogue On Poets, including recently discovered texts about catharsis, which appear in English for the first time.

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Poetics: Bk. 1 (Hackett Classics) + Three Uses of the Knife (Diaries, Letters and Essays): On the Nature and Purpose of Drama
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Product details

  • Paperback: 261 pages
  • Publisher: Hackett Publishing Co, Inc (1 Dec 1987)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0872200337
  • ISBN-13: 978-0872200333
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 160,030 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Aristotle was born at Stageira, in the dominion of the kings of Macedonia, in 384 BC. For twenty years he studied at Athens in the Academy of Plato, on whose death in 347 he left, and, some time later, became tutor of the young Alexander the Great. When Alexander succeeded to the throne of Macedonia in 335, Aristotle returned to Athens and established his school and research institute, the Lyceum, to which his great erudition attracted a large number of scholars.

After Alexander's death in 323, anti-Macedonian feeling drove Aristotle out of Athens, and he fled to Chalcis in Euboea, where he died in 322. His writings, which were of extraordinary range, profoundly affected the whole course of ancient and medieval philosophy, and they are still eagerly studied and debated by philosophers today. Very many of them have survived and among the most famous are the Ethics and the Politics.

Product Description


Of enormous use to anyone, philosopher or classicist, student or instructor, who wants to know more about Aristotle's work on literature ... more than I would have believed possible, [Janko makes] the text of the Poetics transparent and accessible to nonclassicists. The translation is based on a meticulous study of the text. Deviations from the standard text by R. Kassell ... are listed in transliterated Greek; and textual questions are discussed and explained lucidly. The brief introduction is full of useful information, on Aristotle, on the background of the Poetics, on its structure, and on major controversies. In addition to all this, the text is followed by a little treasury of sources that permit a sketchy reconstruction of the lost second book of the Poetics. --Ann N. Michelini, University of Cincinnati Thorough, admirable, indispensable to anyone seriously interested in Aristotle's literary theory, with or without access to the texts in Greek. --Thomas Clayton, University of Minnesota

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Incomplete but fascinating 23 Jan 2003
By A Customer
The idea of Catharsis that is central to the text remains an enigmatic one throughout the work. This presumably because we have lost the true meaning in texts that we no longer are aware of the whereabouts of. Nonetheless the text is a superb look at our interests in the macabre and the uses of the arts in society. His conclusion (differing from Plato his teacher) is that art is of great practical use in relieving us of our excessive emotions. It is without doubt a slightly ungenerous view of art but it is argued for well.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Translation and Reconstruction 2 Sep 2003
By John N. Thornburg - Published on Amazon.com
This text is the first book of literary criticism in the western literary tradition--and the most influential. It is also a how-to-write-a-successful-story text, based on Aristotle's inductive study of Greek literature. Richard Janko's rendering is the best English translation I have read. His commentary on catharsis is profound, resolving what has often been a stumbling block for many critics and theorists. His interpretation is well in line with the rest of Aristotle's philosophy and makes Aristotle's analysis even more useful for both students of literature and contemporary writers. Janko's reconstruction of Aristotle's lost book on comedy is splendid, a contribution to the history of ideas and comic theory.
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